Microsoft supports Washington D.C start-ups with new Innovation Lounge

Sean Dudley
Sean Dudley
By Sean Dudley on 23 May 2014
Microsoft supports Washington D.C start-ups with new Innovation Lounge

Microsoft is supporting start-ups and new businesses in Washington D.C through a new ‘Innovation Lounge’, set up at the 1776 start-up hub in the city.

1776 serves as a nucleus of connections and resources for more than 200 local start-ups, enabling them to work, collaborate and create.

Located at the 1776 campus in the heart of the city, the Innovation Lounge features a range of Microsoft technology, including Microsoft Surfaces, Windows Phone devices, an Xbox One, a Makerbot 3-D printer and a 55-inch Perceptive Pixel touchscreen display.

The latest Microsoft technology is also available at the Innovation Lounge, such as Windows 8.1, Office 365, Skype and Visual Studio, as well as access to cloud platforms such as Microsoft Azure and CRM Online.

“While we’ve branded this the ‘Microsoft Innovation Lounge’ – it is intended to be used and leveraged by the 1776 start-ups and community as a way to facilitate access to expertise and mentorship, and to provide a space for startups to create, innovate and collaborate, said Dan Kasun, senior director, developer and platform evangelism, U.S. Public Sector, Microsoft, in a blog post. “The space also serves as a place to demonstrate their work to customers and investors, and somewhere to just kick back and relax.”

Microsoft has been active in the fostering of economic development and innovation in Washington D.C for a number of years. The company established a digital alliance with the city to provide resources and training to job seekers in the district, as well as enlisting hundreds of start-ups in the city on the BizSpark programme, which provides free software and services to new companies.

“We realise it’s critical to support other organisations that share this mission, and we are proud to be a founding partner for 1776, and equally proud that 1776 is one of the few Microsoft Ventures partners in the country,” added Kasun. “Microsoft representatives will be in the lounge regularly to provide guidance and support to those who call the incubation hub their working home. Our goal is to help these start-ups get one step closer to success.”

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